This video contains a discussion of reflowable EPUB. Reflowable EPUB is an ebook file format that displays a publication like a very simple website with web technologies like HTML and CSS to structure and format the content. An example of a reflowable EPUB is shown, and the strengths and weaknesses of reflowable EPUB are explained.
- [Instructor] Reflowable EPUB is a file format that displays a publication like a very simple website. It uses web technologies like HTML and CSS to structure and format the content. And when we consider the options for publishing with EPUB, it's important to distinguish between the two kind of EPUB. First, there's the kind of EPUB that's used for narrative fiction, and other books with very simple layouts. This kind of EPUB allows the user to resize the text, change the font and other aspects of the E-book's appearance.
When this happens, the text will reflow throughout the book, so this kind of EPUB is called reflowable. Here's an example, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. So I have text and images, I can navigate to different pages, I have a table of contents that I can click to navigate to different chapters. And in the software for reading the EPUB, I'll have controls to alter the presentation. So I can change the size of the text, I can resize the window to change the margins and columns, and I can even change the color of the page and the text.
In addition to this kind of EPUB, there's also fixed layout EPUBs, which as the name suggests, do not allow the reader to adjust the appearance of the page and we'll talk more about those in the next movie. But for now let's consider some of the advantages and disadvantages of Reflowable EPUB as a publishing format. Some of the advantages are that EPUBs can include interactive elements, like hyperlinks, media, and animation. And since EPUBs are a text-based format, they can be small in file size, and they can sometimes be created by converting data that you have in a database or in other files, and EPUB is the basis for the files sold in Apple's iBooks store, and BarnesandNoble.com.
Amazon by the way, uses its own format for Kindle E-books, which is somewhat different from an EPUB, but you can convert an EPUB into the Amazon Kindle format. Also since most EPUBs have reflowable text, they naturally fit the different screen sizes of mobile devices, making for a better reading experience. Okay, so what are some of the disadvantages of EPUBs? In terms of workflow, EPUB is definitely not as simple to build as something like a PDF can be. There are just more steps and more things to worry about when you're building an EPUB.
EPUB is a structured file format that has to be created according to strict specifications, in order to be valid and to be accepted into online stores. And at some point, someone with expertise in HTML and CSS will have to work in the code to get a valid EPUB file that looks the way you want. In most cases it involves significant planning and effort to produce a professional quality EPUB. So to sum up, if your goal is to get your publication into major online bookstores, like Apple and Barnes and Noble, EPUB is the file format that can get you there, and an EPUB can be converted for sale at Amazon.
But you can't produce a professional quality EPUB without a fair amount of technical work, including working in code. You can include animation and interactivity, but you'll have to accept the fact that you have limited control over the appearance of a Reflowable EPUB.
- Overview of interactive document types, including PDF and EPUB
- Creating interactive objects
- Setting up hyperlinks, cross-references, and a table of contents
- Working with media
- Publishing documents with Publish Online
- Creating EPUBs
- Following workflows for interactivity: interactive PDF, reflowable EPUB, and fixed-layout EPUB